Category Archives: Uncategorized

Locating Info on Newly-Formed (Ed Reform) Nonprofits

How to Identify a Corporate Reformer Organization with an agenda built on Greed that wants to eat your public schools and make a profit doing it.


One of the marks of market-based ed reform is the issue of mushrooming nonprofits. Want an instant platform for advancing school choice? Non-career, instant teachers? Test-driven classrooms? Drumming up grass-roots-styled support for an outside, billionaire-funded, corporate ed project?

Start a nonprofit, and create a vague-yet-stylish website to promote it.

Discovering details behind newly-created nonprofits is difficult because of their newness. One might even wonder if the self-proclaimed nonprofit is actually a nonprofit in its own right.

For example: A colleague wrote to me about his search for information on two new organizations: Wayfinder Foundation and Memphis Lift. One question concerned whether these two orgs were nonprofits in their own right or simply programs operated by other nonprofits (namely, ed reform nonprofits) that were choosing to hide in the shadows.

In order to discover if these two orgs were orgs in their own right, my first though was to see…

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Posted by on January 10, 2019 in Uncategorized


Corrupt Cybercharters: Ban Them All!

Indiana’s publicly funded, private sector, virtual corporate charter schools only graduated 2% – Two percent – of their 1,009 – one-thousand-and-nine seniors. That was a graduation class of 20 out of 1,009, and this virtual charter school takes money away from real brick-and-mortar publicly funded public schools. Why does Indiana let this virtual charter school stay in business?

Diane Ravitch's blog

Shaina Cavazos of Chalkbeat in Indiana reports on the startling graduation rate of Indiana’s publicly funded virtual charter school: 2%. Two percent.

“About 2 percent of Indiana Virtual Pathways Academy’s 1,009 seniors graduated, putting the school’s graduation rate below just two others — a school that caters to students with significant intellectual and behavioral disabilities and an adult high school that enrolls only a couple dozen students each and graduated no students last year. Across the state, the vast majority of schools graduate at least three-quarters of their senior students.”

Do you remember when charter advocates promised that charters would be more successful, more innovative, and more accountable than public schools? They are not. For-profit Virtual Charter Schools are scams. They are a waste of money. They are a public embarrassment. Why are they allowed to open?

Peter Greene explains here about this Indiana cybercharter, which buys its existence…

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Posted by on January 4, 2019 in Uncategorized


Governor-Elect Newsom: Expanding Pre-K Cannot Take the Place of Reducing Class Sizes!

Diane Ravitch's blog

Governor-Elected Gavin Newsom has let it be known that he plans to use California’s large reserves to expand pre-K.

As we have learned in New York City these past few years, expanding pre-K is great, but it is far from enough.

The most pressing problem in California’s schools are:

1. Reducing class sizes in K-12
2. Increasing teachers’ salaries
3. A moratorium on charter schools, which take money away from public schools
4. Providing the counselors and support personnel that schools need

Governor-Elect Newsom should not forget that the billionaires spent huge sums of money funding former Los Angeles Mayor Villaraigosa, who came in third.

And they spent millions more trying to defeat new State Superintendent Tony Thurmond and losing.

Put the money where the kids are.

Pre-K is nice but not enough.

From the LA Times:

Seeking to frame his new administration as one with a firm focus on…

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Posted by on January 3, 2019 in Uncategorized


When “School Choice” Means “Schools Choose”

Study finds publicly-funded (robbed public money from public schools), private sector “high-performing charter schools are successful in part because they screen out the costliest-to-educate students from their applicant pools.”

Diane Ravitch's blog

Two scholars demonstrated what we already knew: many charter schools are skimming and choosing the students they want while excluding the ones they don’t want, the ones likely to cost too much or pull down their test scores.

Peter Bergman and Isaac McFarlin Jr. tested the hypothesis.

Here is the abstract of their paper.

School choice may allow schools to “cream skim” students perceived as easier to educate. To test this, we sent emails from fictitious parents to 6,452 schools in 29 states and Washington, D.C. The fictitious parent asked whether any student is eligible to apply to the school and how to apply. Each email signaled a randomly assigned attribute of the child. We find that schools are less likely to respond to inquiries from students with poor behavior, low achievement, or a special need. Lower response rates to students with a potentially significant special need are driven by…

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Posted by on December 28, 2018 in Uncategorized


In the Public Interest: Betsy DeVos, Mark Zuckerberg, and Bill Gates Want Your Child’s School to Close

“Between 2001 and 2013, nearly 2,500 charter schools closed nationwide, many because of low academic performance or because the private group in charge committed fraud or wasted public money.”

Diane Ravitch's blog

Jeremy Mohler, of the nonpartisan “In the Public Interest” wrote this post:

The phone rings and a cold, automated voice says your kid’s school is closed tomorrow. A sign hangs on the school’s door saying there are “repair issues.”

That’s all parents of students at Florida’s Unity Charter School received. No word of the K-8 school closing for good. No mention that its building was just foreclosed on and will be auctioned off by the end of the year.

Luckily, the local public school district is ready to help. “If Unity Charter School is foreclosed, we’re happy to welcome students into our classrooms,” says its superintendent.

Turns out, it’s a common story. Students at charter schools, which are publicly funded but privately operated, are two and a half times more likely to have their school close than those at traditional, neighborhood schools.

Between 2001 and 2013, nearly 2,500 charter schools…

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Posted by on December 14, 2018 in Uncategorized


Bill Phillis: What Do Privatizers Do When They Fail?

Share, share, and share again and join the fight to save OUR public schools from a small army of greedy billionaire autocrats and their evil minions.

Diane Ravitch's blog

That’s a trick question. Privatizers fail again and again, and when they fail, they double down on their failure.

After they takeover public schools, their replacement fails (unless it kicks out the students it doesn’t want and keeps only the ones that get high test scores).

After the charter school fails, it either remains open or is replaced by another charter school.

Charter lobbyists fight accountability in the state legislature. Accountability applies only to public schools.

When a charter fails and closes, it is never restored to the public, which paid for the school.

Bill Phillis of Ohio writes:

The anti-public common school horde is conjuring up more tricks to undermine the public common school system

The school privatization movement is being driven by a gaggle of somewhat diverse troops but all, intentionally or unintentionally, are working for the demise of traditional public education. Billions and billions from philanthropic organizations…

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Posted by on December 11, 2018 in Uncategorized


Beware! Privatization Vandals Target 7 Cities for Destruction and Takeover

Diane Ravitch's blog

The privatization movement used to operate in stealth. It used to pretend to have grassroots support. Those days are over. As the public catches on to the empty promises of the charter industry and its intention to undermine democratic institutions, the charter funders have created a SWAT team to infiltrate targeted cities across the nation, promote charter schools, and buy their school boards.

These guys are not the Red Cross or the Salvation Army. They are paid vandals, on a mission to destroy public schools. They are out to destroy not just public schools, but local democracy. They should be ashamed. Usually, it is illegal to buy elections. This so-called City Fund brashly announces that it has raised nearly $200 million—with more on the way—to disrupt public schools and buy elections. How is this legal?

Chalkbeat’s Matt Barnum reports that vandals from the billionaire-funded “City Fund” have targeted seven cities…

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Posted by on December 10, 2018 in Uncategorized